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Wylies - Past & Future… 1908 – A Year Of Tragedy And Invention! We


Wylies - Past & Future… 1908 – A Year Of Tragedy And Invention! We

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									    December 2008

Wylies - Past & Future…                                  1908 – A Year Of Tragedy And Invention!
This is it – the final Centenary Flyer! How the year     Many remarkable things happened during the year of 1908, but the most horrific
has flown by. We started in January with Dick            occurred towards the end. On December 28 1908 Messina in Sicily experienced the
Wylie’s 94 birthday, and then in March celebrated        worst earth quake ever recorded in Europe, followed by a tsunami. It registered a
Dick and Jean’s Diamond Wedding Anniversary!             Richter scale of 7 and killed over 75,000 people. One hundred years on, in the shadow
                                                         of Mount Etna, 250,000 people now live in the city alone. Hopefully, with modern
Our nurses held special nurse clinics with Centenary     equipment, the local people should get plenty of warning before the next catastrophe.
free gifts every month. We also had an extra-
special Open Day this summer and a Centenary             In 1908 a housewife, Melitta Bentz of Germany, started experimenting with circles of her
Ball, both attended by members of the Wylie family.      children’s blotting paper to prepare coffee. She went on to manufacturing coffee pots in
Dick Wylie was the VIP at our Open Day. Like many        1912. Also the first commercially successful electric toaster was available one hundred
of you he was interest in our display showing the        years ago in the USA for $1.45, even though only 10% of US homes were wired for
history of Wylies through the years –it even included    electricity! Prohibition had yet to affect the USA but Iceland banned the sale of
a photograph of his father’s old car!                    intoxicating beverages in 1908 and continued to do so until 1934.

                                                         Tea bags and ‘teasmades’ seem fairly modern inventions but apparently not! Tea bags
                                                         were pioneered by New York tea and coffee wholesaler Thomas Sullivan in 1908. It
                                                         started when he sent samples of blends of tea in small hand sewn muslin and china-silk
                                                         bags. The orders poured in and soon he was packing them by machine. The first
                                                         ‘teasmade’ was registered by gunsmith Frank Clarke of Birmingham in 1902. Made of
                                                         brass and copper, when the alarm clock rang, levers moved causing a match to strike,
                                                         light an oil fire, heat a kettle, which then tilted pouring boiling water into a teapot!

                                                         We do not have such a beautifully complicated device available today, but if you would
                                                         like a cup of tea or coffee while at our Upminster surgery you are very welcome to help
                                                         yourself from our machine in the waiting room!

His father, Arthur, was born on a farm in Scotland
and worked as a grocer before deciding to become a
                                                         We’ve Always Employed The Best!
veterinary surgeon. He qualified from Edinburgh
                                                         When Arthur Wylie set up his plate in 1908, he, like most general practitioners of
University and then moved down south, eventually
                                                         the time, worked in a one-man practice. His son, Dick Wylie followed him into the
being able to start his own practice in Grays.
                                                         profession and eventually took over his father’s surgery. He then went into
                                                         partnership with Dick Coulton and Eddie Dixon, giving the local pet owners the
A good qualification was very important in 1908 as
                                                         choice of attending surgeries in Upminster, Hornchurch or Grays. As the practices
there was no welfare state to help folk who fell on
                                                         grew busier assistants were employed, and later Arthur’s grandson David Wylie and
hard times. In fact it was exactly 100 years ago that
                                                         Hamish Wood also joined the partnership. Some clients will remember these
David Lloyd George, Chancellor of the Exchequer in
                                                         names. Certainly people who worked at Wylies always seem to remember the place
the Liberal government, stated that he was
                                                         with affection. Australian vet, Ian Hobson, is coming over to visit Dick and Jean
determined to ‘lift the shadow of the workhouse from
                                                         Wylie in January. He was the first Ozzie to work at Wylies - the first of many from
the homes of the poor’. He introduced the Old Age
                                                         the southern hemisphere! No doubt he will see a lot of changes!
Pensions Act to provide between 1s and 5s per
week to people over 70 years old, if their income
                                                         Other past-assistants have gone on to become big names in the UK veterinary
was less than 12s per week. An additional £16million
                                                         world. One was Trevor Turner, who left to start his own practice in Northolt, lectured
a year needed to be raised to pay for these pensions
                                                         at veterinary congresses and married a lady famous as a leading light in the
and this necessitated increases in taxation. The
                                                         Veterinary Nursing Association. Another, Oliphant Jackson, became one of the first
House of Lords tried to block the proposals, but after
                                                         experts in ‘exotic medicine’ and taught many veterinary students the art of handling
a long struggle Lloyd George succeeded. The 1911
                                                         snakes. Ray Butcher, now our senior partner here, started as a school boy seeing
Parliament Act then restricted the power of the
                                                         practice. He has since been President of both the BSAVA, (British Small Animal
House of Lords to block any other legislation passed
                                                         Veterinary Association), and FECAVA, (the European equivalent). He is also a
by the House of Commons.
                                                         veterinary advisor for WSPA (World Society for the Protection of Animals), and has
                                                         won many awards worldwide for services to the veterinary profession.
We are proud our practice has been serving the
                                                         (Below: Dick Wylie & Ray Butcher at our Open Day)
local community for 100 years, but we also know
that the reason the practice has survived and grown
through the last century is because it has moved
with the times and tried to look after its clients as
well as their pets. Longevity alone is not enough –
after all Woolworths started 99 years ago! Let us
know how you think we can improve in 2009 and
we’ll give you a Wylie Centenary pen!

Editor: Kathy Beasley

Ps. Are you full of Christmas cheer? Spare a thought
for the poor wild birds in this cold weather and also
stray dogs and cats. Rescue centres always
appreciate gifts of food.

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